Mourning the Death of Handwriting

Don't blame computers for my chicken scratch. A shift in educational priorities has left an entire generation of Americans with embarrassingly bad penmanship. How much does it matter?

Laurence Mouton / Corbis

I can't remember how to write a capital Z in cursive. The rest of my letters are shaky and stiff, my words slanted in all directions. It's not for lack of trying. In grade school I was one of those insufferable girls who used pink pencils and dotted their i's with little circles. I experimented with different scripts, and for a brief period I even took the time to make two-story a's, with the fancy overhang used in most fonts (including this magazine's). But everything I wrote, I wrote in print. I am a member of Gen Y, the...

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